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Effect of dehydration on human cardiac function and haemodynamics during prolonged exercise in the heat

Funding body

Grant-in-Aid for JSPS Fellows (Japan Society of for the Promotion of Science)


Principal investigator: Dr Kazuhito Watanabe
Co- investigators: Professor José González-Alonso, Professor Ashraf Khir, Dr Eric Stöhr, Mrs Sumie Watanabe

Project description

People undertaking prolonged vigorous exercise in the heat experience substantial bodily fluid losses due to sweating, a process termed dehydration. If these fluid losses are not replaced, exercise performance is impaired in association with significant alterations in physiological function, including marked strain in the cardiovascular system. One of the major features of the cardiovascular strain induced by dehydration during prolonged running or cycling is the significant reductions in the amount of blood the heart pumps per beat (i.e., stroke volume) as well as per minute (i.e., cardiac output). How those responses are brought about is not as yet well understood. This project will investigate the physiological mechanisms underlying the reductions in stroke volume and cardiac output with dehydration during prolonged exercise in the heat. The findings of this study will advance our understanding of human cardiovascular function during exercise and will inform how athletes could improve exercise performance at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games.